The malevolently-inclined are getting more ambitious (a 2014 study by the Ponemon Institute that evaluated security-breach costs in the retail sector suggests that average size of a breach is about 30,000 records) and more damaging (average loss is now about $105 per stolen record). The same study estimated that the average cost of a cyber-crime for the retailer is about $3.15-million. These are average numbers only: recent large-scale retail breaches have involved records in the millions, with costs similarly increased. Although the article was written before the holidays, the tips provided are still very useful to manage the risk of security breaches.
In a recent survey of 500 information technology and data security workers, 40 percent said they could easily use their knowledge of encryption keys, shared passwords, weak controls and loopholes in data security programs to make off with information, or hold their organization’s data hostage. And 31 percent said that, even if they no longer worked for the company, with their knowledge of the systems they could access encryption keys and authorization codes and hack in remotely to snoop, secretly alter files or shut down the data system.
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